clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

A Look at the Accuracy of Media Predictions Since 2009

Mississippi State has always been predicted to finish in the bottom half of the SEC West. How well do they exceed the media's predictions compared to other SEC teams?

Derick E.Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Mississippi State has once again been predicted to finish last in the SEC West. However, in reality, Mississippi State has not finished last in the SEC West since 2009, which was Dan Mullen's first year. Despite knowledge of this fact, the media continues predict Mississippi State as the worst team in the west.

So today, we are going to look at the teams that have consistently exceeded expectations, the teams that have consistently failed to meet expectations, and also the teams that have consistently met their expectations. Each season is different and there are some anomalies, however the goal of this article is to look at the trend of the media's accuracy of the past six seasons.  Since the 2016 season has not finished, the 2016 preseason standings will not be used.

In order to determine which SEC Team has exceeded the media's expectations the most, a system has been put into place that shows how well a team has finished in the SEC Standings in contrast or accordance with their preseason prediction. How good a team was or how well they played or how memorable a certain season or play was has no factor in this system because it purely measures living up to media expectations. For example, if Tennessee is predicted to win the SEC East and they end up finishing 4th, then they will have negative three points or -3. Points will only be determined by division standings and not conference champions.

2009

SEC Predicted Order of Finish
SEC Champion: Florida
Eastern Division Votes(1st)
1. Florida 64(64)
2. Georgia 133
3. South Carolina 217
4. Tennessee 258
5. Vanderbilt 317
6. Kentucky 355
Western Division
1. Alabama 109(33)
2. LSU 145(15)
3. Ole Miss 149(16)
4. Arkansas 245
5. Auburn 309
6. Mississippi State 387

Final SEC Conference Standings
SEC Champion: Alabama
Eastern Division Conf Over
1. Florida 8-0 13-1
2. Georgia 4-4 8-5
3. Tennessee 4-4 7-6
4. Kentucky 3-5 7-6
5. South Carolina 3-5 7-6
6. Vanderbilt 0-8 2-10
Western Division
1. Alabama 8-0 14-0
2. LSU 5-3 9-4
3. Ole Miss 4-4 9-4
4. Arkansas 3-5 8-5
5. Auburn 3-5 8-5
6. Mississippi State 3-5 5-7

The SEC Media correctly predicted the entire SEC West this year which is surprising, as you will see. Meanwhile in the SEC East South Carolina is now at -2 because they finished two spots below where they were expected to finish. Vanderbilt is at -1,Tennessee is at +1, and Kentucky is at +2. Meanwhile the rest of the SEC is at 0 for meeting their preseason expectation.

2010


SEC Predicted Order of Finish


SEC Champion: Alabama


Eastern Division
Votes(1st)
1.
Florida
1030(153)
2.
Georgia
791(15)
3.
South Carolina
790(8)
4.
Kentucky
462
5.
Tennessee
450
6.
Vanderbilt
194(1)

Western Division

1.
Alabama
1034(157)
2.
Arkansas
726(6)
3.
Auburn
691(10)
4.
LSU
653(1)
5.
Mississippi State
320
6.
Ole Miss
293


Final SEC Conference Standings



SEC Champion: Auburn



Eastern Division
Conf
Over
1.
South Carolina
5-3
9-5
2.
Florida
4-4
8-5
3.
Georgia
3-5
6-7
4.
Tennessee
3-5
6-7
5.
Kentucky
2-6
6-7
6.
Vanderbilt
1-7
2-10

Western Division


1.
Auburn
8-0
14-0
2.
Arkansas
6-2
10-3
3.
LSU
6-2
11-2
4.
Alabama
5-3
10-3
5.
Mississippi State
4-4
9-4
6.
Ole Miss
1-6
4-8

In the SEC West, Alabama moves down to -3, Arkansas remains at 0, Auburn moves up to +2, LSU moves up to +1, and Mississippi State and Ole Miss remain at 0. In the SEC East, Florida moves down to -1, Georgia moves down to -1, Kentucky moves down to +1, Tennessee moves up to +2, and Vanderbilt remains at -1.

2011


SEC Predicted Order of Finish


SEC Champion: Alabama


Eastern Division
Votes(1st)
1.
South Carolina
(114)
2.
Georgia
(38)
3.
Florida
(12)
4.
Tennessee
(2)
5.
Kentucky
(1)
6.
Vanderbilt


Western Division

1.
Alabama
(111)
2.
LSU
(30)
3.
Arkansas
(23)
4.
Mississippi State
(1)
5.
Auburn

6.
Ole Miss
(2)

*note- unable to find total votes for preseason


Final SEC Conference Standings



SEC Champion: LSU



Eastern Division
Conf
Over
1.
Georgia
7-1
10-4
2.
South Carolina
6-2
11-2
3.
Florida
3-5
7-6
4.
Vanderbilt
2-6
6-7
5.
Kentucky
2-6
5-7
6.
Tennessee
1-7
5-7

Western Division


1.
LSU
8-0
13-1
2.
Alabama
7-1
12-1
3.
Arkansas
6-2
11-2
4.
Auburn
4-4
8-5
5.
Mississippi State
2-6
7-6
6.
Ole Miss
0-8
2-10

So in the SEC West, Alabama moves down to -4(National Championships do not factor in the point system either), Arkansas remains at 0, Auburn moves up to +3, LSU moves up to +2, Mississippi State moves down to -1, and Ole Miss remains at 0. In the SEC East, Florida remains at -1, Georgia moves up to 0, Kentucky remains at +1, South Carolina moves down to -1, Tennessee moves down to 0 and Vanderbilt moves up to +1.

2012


Predicted Order of Finish


SEC Champion: LSU


Eastern Division
Votes(1st)
1.
Georgia
(132)
2.
South Carolina
(72)
3.
Florida
(12)
4.
Missouri
(2)
5.
Tennessee
(4)
6.
Vanderbilt

7.
Kentucky


Western Division

1.
LSU
(139)
2.
Alabama
(72)
3.
Arkansas
(6)
4.
Auburn
(4)
5.
Texas A&M

6.
Mississippi State

7.
Ole Miss
(1)

Final SEC Conference Standings
SEC Champion: Alabama
Eastern Division Conf Over
1. Georgia 7-1 12-2
2. Florida 7-1 11-2
3. South Carolina 6-2 11-2
4. Vanderbilt 5-3 9-4
5. Missouri 2-6 5-7
6. Tennessee 1-7 5-7
7. Kentucky 0-8 2-10
Western Division
1. Alabama 7-1 13-1
2. LSU 6-2 10-3
3. Texas A&M 6-2 11-2
4. Mississippi State 4-4 8-5
5. Ole Miss 3-5 7-6
6. Arkansas 2-6 4-8
7. Auburn 0-8 3-9

In the SEC West, Alabama moves up to -3, Arkansas plummets to -3, Auburn plummets to 0, LSU moves down to +1, Mississippi State moves up to +1, Ole Miss moves up to +2, and Texas A&M checks in at +2. In the SEC East, Florida moves up to 0, Georgia remains at 0, Kentucky remains at +1, Missouri checks in at -1, South Carolina moves down to -2, Tennessee moves down to -1, and Vanderbilt moves up to +3.

2013


Predicted Order of Finish


SEC Champion: Alabama


Eastern Division
Votes(1st)
1.
Georgia
1570(149)
2.
South Carolina
1474(75)
3.
Florida
1300(19)
4.
Vanderbilt
858
5.
Tennessee
694
6.
Missouri
577
7.
Kentucky
331

Western Division

1.
Alabama
1681(225)
2.
Texas A&M
1333(11)
3.
LSU
1324(7)
4.
Ole Miss
883
5.
Auburn
579
6.
Mississippi State
516
7.
Arkansas
488


Final SEC Conference Standings



SEC Champion: Alabama



Eastern Division
Conf
Over
1.
Missouri
7-1
12-2
2.
South Carolina
6-2
11-2
3.
Georgia
5-3
8-5
4.
Vanderbilt
4-4
9-4
5.
Florida
3-5
4-8
6.
Tennessee
2-6
5-7
7.
Kentucky
0-8
2-10

Western Division


1.
Auburn
7-1
12-2
2.
Alabama
7-1
12-2
3.
LSU
5-3
10-3
4.
Texas A&M
4-4
9-4
5.
Mississippi State
3-5
7-6
6.
Ole Miss
3-5
8-5
7.
Arkansas
0-8
3-9

In the SEC West, Alabama moves down to -4, Arkansas remains at -3, Auburn jumps up to +4, LSU remains at +1, Mississippi State moves up to +2, and Ole Miss and Texas A&M move down to 0. IN the SEC East, Florida moves down to -2, Georgia moves down to -2, Kentucky remains at +1, Missouri jumps up to +4, South Carolina remains at -2, Tennessee moves down to -2, and Vanderbilt remains at +3.

2014


Predicted Order of Finish


SEC Champion: Alabama


Eastern Division
Votes(1st)
1.
South Carolina
1895
2.
Georgia
1777
3.
Florida
1362
4.
Missouri
1263
5.
Tennessee
893
6.
Vanderbilt
619
7.
Kentucky
395

Western Division

1.
Alabama
1915
2.
Auburn
1735
3.
LSU
1453
4.
Ole Miss
1069
5.
Mississippi State
890
6.
Texas A&M
791
7.
Arkansas
351


Final SEC Conference Standings



SEC Champion: Alabama



Eastern Division
Conf
Over
1.
Missouri
7-1
11-3
2.
Gerogia
6-2
10-3
3.
Florida
4-4
7-5
4.
Tennessee
3-5
7-6
5.
South Carolina
3-5
7-6
6.
Kentucky
2-6
5-7
7.
Vanderbilt
0-8
3-9

Western Division


1.
Alabama
7-1
12-2
2.
Mississippi State
6-2
10-3
3.
Ole Miss
5-3
9-4
4.
Auburn
4-4
8-5
5.
LSU
4-4
8-5
6.
Texas A&M
3-5
8-5
7.
Arkansas
2-6
7-6

In the Sec West, Alabama remains at -4, Arkansas remains at -3, Auburn moves down to +2, Mississippi State jumps up to +5, Ole Miss moves up to +1, and Texas A&M remains at 0. In the SEC East, Florida remains at -2, Georgia remains at -2, Kentucky moves up to +2, Missouri jumps up to +7, South Carolina falls to -6, Tennessee moves up to -1, and Vanderbilt moves down to +2.

2015


Predicted Order of Finish


SEC Champion: Alabama


Eastern Division
Votes(1st)
1.
Georgia
1498(166)
2.
Tennessee
1231(36)
3.
Missouri
1196(20)
4.
South Carolina
830(1)
5.
Florida
768(1)
6.
Kentucky
534(1)
7.
Vanderbilt
243

Western Division

1.
Alabama
1405(92)
2.
Auburn
1362(108)
3.
LSU
870(10)
4.
Arkansas
821(6)
5.
Ole Miss
732(3)
6.
Texas A&M
628(4)
7.
Mississippi State
482(2)


Final SEC Conference Standings



SEC Champion: Alabama



Eastern Division
Conf
Over
1.
Florida
7-1
10-4
2.
Tennessee
5-3
9-4
3.
Georgia
5-3
10-3
4.
Vanderbilt
2-6
4-8
5.
Kentucky
2-5
5-7
6.
Missouri
1-7
5-7
7.
South Carolina
1-7
3-9

Western Division


1.
Alabama
7-1
14-1
2.
Ole Miss
6-2
10-3
3.
Arkansas
5-3
8-5
4.
LSU
5-3
9-3
5.
Texas A&M
4-4
8-5
6.
Mississippi State
4-4
9-4
7.
Auburn
2-6
7-6

Final Results

The Difference in Division Standings (2009-2015)
1. Mississippi State +6
2. Vanderbilt +5
3.. Missouri +4
3.. Ole Miss +4
4. Kentucky +3
6. Florida +2
7. Texas A&M +1
8. Tennessee -1
9. Arkansas -2
9. LSU -2
11. Auburn -3
12. Georgia -4
12. Alabama -4
14. South Carolina -9

Mississippi State is the #1 team in the SEC to exceed the medias expectations in the SEC during Dan Mullen's tenure. One thing to note about these numbers is if your team is ranked 1st almost every preseason, then you are likely to not meet that expectation year after year which is why you see some of the top SEC teams near the bottom.

Before 2012 (Dak Prescott's first season) Mississippi State either lived up to its preseason expectation, or failed to meet their expectation. Dak Prescott was able to take Mississippi State to the next level with this shift, and if Mississippi State is going to continue this trend, then they are going to need to exceed the media's expectations like Dak Prescott was able to do.